Raisethorpe residents want RDP houses

2017-08-09 06:04
PHOTO: lethiwe makhanyaThe remains of the settlement after the fire last week.

PHOTO: lethiwe makhanyaThe remains of the settlement after the fire last week.

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IT has been a week since the fire broke out in Raisethorpe, which resulted in 15 houses being destroyed and leaving more than 20 families homeless.

Affected residents claim that since the incident the only thing they have received is food, the tents only came after they had started to rebuild their houses.

Maritzburg Fever went to the area on Friday and found children playing outside who said they haven’t been to school for a week because they don’t have uniforms and stationery.

Residents said it feels as though the municipality has abandoned them and claim the municipality promised to bring a mobile “Home Affairs office” to them so they could be assisted in getting identity documents and birth certificates fast and free of charge.

“It’s been a week now and still there is nothing. We were supposed to go and get our grant money at the beginning of the week, but we couldn’t.

“We don’t have money to go to Home Affairs and get new identity documents and birth certificates, let alone the money we need to pay for them.

“At least if we get our identity documents we will be able to get grant money and buy our children uniforms and stationery for school. They are now behind with their school work” said a resident.

Resident Thobeka Leisa told Fever this is the second time she has lost her house to fire.

“Last year I lost my two-roomed house with everything inside. I rebuilt it and added another room to make it a three-room house because of the children. That was also burnt down last week when the fire broke, although we tried to remove some stuff inside.

“We want the municipality to play a part and provide us with RDP houses because this is not going to stop,” she said.

Residents said they not planning on moving, although there have been several fires.

“The municipality says they don’t want informal settlements to expand, yet they doing nothing to help people who live there. If I live with my children, as they grow older they need their own place. We can’t live in the same one room.

“They [municipality] need to build us RDP houses here. This happens every year - there are always fires like this.

“We are very grateful for the tents, but we need proper houses. We don’t want to continue living like this,” she said.

Msunduzi Municipal spokesperson, Thobeka Mafumbatha was contacted for comment but none was forthcoming at the time of print.

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